Craniosacral - Neck Pain
Neck Pain | Stiff Neck | Wry Neck or Torticollis | Whiplash
Muscular spasm and fascial restriction are the two most common causes of pain or stiffness in the cervical (neck) area. This may be from poor posture, uneven weight loading through the shoulders, poor abdominal and back strength (core strength), disc degeneration or subluxation, head forward posture from reading or computer work, accident or injury.
Necks are an interesting blend of dainty and strong structure and our treatment techniques reflect this also. With Craniosacral Therapy we can work very gently to release the sometimes very strong contraction of muscles which make the cervical region rigid, hard to turn, and inflexible. This then allows the bones to decompress, allowing more blood to circulate, increase the space between the discs (bones), and release tension held as a consequence of cervical tension in both the head and jaw.
Craniosacral Therapy can release and move bony structures without force by first working with the nerves to relax the muscles. For people who have a chronically tight neck or have suffered sudden force as in whiplash - this is a wonderful treatment that releases without aggressive manipulation. We also use techniques to remove cranial tension which can lead to headaches and migraines, teeth grinding, jaw clenching, clicky jaw, and popping noises in the ear or inside your head.
We often work into the front area of your neck which for people with head forward posture can be incredibly tight as it is working overtime to hold the heaviness of your head beyond the line of gravity that runs through the centre of our bodies.
With Wry Neck or Torticollis, this is a severe muscle spasm on just one side of the neck, preventing you from straightening your head or turning your head to the side. Most often people wake with a wry neck, though it can happen at any time as you move. Two to three treatments within a few days will bring the head and neck back into alignment and release the supporting structures in the shoulders and upper chest or if it is congenital it will take longer but can correct the imbalance without the need for surgery (and losing an important supporting muscle of the neck).
Whiplash is caused by a traumatic event, such as a car accident or riding a rollercoaster, in which the head and neck are rapidly flung forward and jerked backward, causing muscular, fascial, ligamentous and neural sprain or damage.
As a result of this injury, the neck musculature becomes guarded to protect the delicate structures (blood supply to the brain and nerves) from further risk of injury.
This causes reduced neck movement, reduced flexibility and in a short amount of time reduced neck muscle strength. It also reduces the movement of the upper body - affecting your daily living - impacting on your jaw, lower spine and vitality.
Trauma of the tissues is created by the accident and treatment involves a dual process of releasing and strengthening the area gently as the neck has already undergone trauma and needs gentle intervention to release the muscle guarding and allow the tissues to heal.
Sometimes the body will gently go into a very diluted form of the whiplash motion, which allows the tissues to release the excess energy accumulated during the original injury.
A combination of Swedish Massage, Myofascial Treatment, Myofascial Unwinding, and Craniosacral Therapy is what works best for this type of injury. As your tissues heal, we incorporate rehabilitation exercises to improve your neck's suppleness and muscle strength integrity.
For a severe whiplash injury a treatment plan may include up to 15 sessions, with improvement after the 4th treatment. With mild cases it may only take up to 6 sessions for your neck to be back to previous functioning capacity if not better.
NB. Treatment plan estimates are based on proper patient participation in their recovery plan, performing exercises as shown, and ceasing any aggravating activities as identified.